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'With thy sweet fingers'

Photo credit: Royal Academy of Music

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This painting is titled after William Shakespeare's Sonnet No.128. It shows a young lady wearing a dark green dress of rich fabric trimmed with rose-pink pleated silk and white lace, with a white lace mop-cap upon her head also trimmed with pink. She is depicted in profile playing a two-manual harpsichord. A cittern hangs from a strap on her chair, and a recorder, music books and music case lie on the floor. The harpsichord lid is raised and she looks intently at the music on its stand. Two further volumes lie on top of the instrument. The two large tapestry curtains are parted to reveal another room beyond, with a Netherlandish type of floor, and there is a round convex mirror on the wall in which, van Eyck-style, is the reflection of someone watching her, maybe her teacher looking at an open book or perhaps music.

Royal Academy of Music





oil on canvas


H 34 x W 42.5 cm

Accession number


Work type


Inscription description

E. Hipkins, 1883


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Royal Academy of Music

Marylebone Road, London, Greater London NW1 5HT England

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